HOME > General Information > Education > Graduate School of Arts and Sciences > Cross-departmental Programs > Japanese-German Joint International Graduate School (IGK)

Japanese-German International Joint Graduate School (IGK)

The 'Japanese-German International Joint Graduate School' Program (Internationales Graduiertenkolleg: IGK) is an international joint program promoted by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) in partnership with the German Research Foundation (DFG) for PhD level research and education. The program aims to foster a systematic academic exchange between Japanese and German graduate schools, in order to facilitate greater collaborative research internationally and to nurture future researchers. The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Tokyo and the Faculty of Philosophy at Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg (University of Halle) in Germany were selected for the program, and between September 2007 and August 2012, participated in a series of reciprocal exchanges of students and faculty. This project, which is one of the four projects adopted by IGK , is the only project in the field of the humanities and social sciences.

Program Overview

Based on the theme, 'Changes in civil society - from a Japanese-German comparative perspective', the University of Tokyo and the University of Halle carry out joint education and research activities through the Japanese-German International Joint Graduate School program.

Joint education is carried out through a mutual exchange of Ph.D. students, a system of multiple advisors, and joint seminars. In general, students who participate in this program follow a "sandwich-model" of exchange, in which they first study at their home university, then at the partner university, then finally at their home university again. Of the students enrolled in the program, six students per year spend up to ten months participating in research at the University of Halle. These students receive financial aid for travel and living costs. Short-term research exchanges, for a period of a few weeks up to three months, are also possible.

Students who participate in this program are able to receive research guidance from not only their advisors at their home university, but also from advisors at the partner university . In addition, students can take part in intensive lectures given by faculty members from their partner university, made possible by the exchange of faculty between the universities.

The biannual seminars that take place in Halle in the autumn and Tokyo in the spring provide further opportunities for students and faculty from Japan and Germany to benefit from close interaction. During these four-day seminars, a variety of educational activities based on the theme of 'civil society' take place: lectures, working groups, plenary sessions, research presentations by individual students and, in some cases, lectures by researchers and strategists from outside the two institutions. In addition to the seminars, there are also international symposiums where German and Japanese researchers present their latest research, always stimulating lively discussions.

Coordinator and Governing Body

The Japanese-German International Joint Graduate School is an educational program at the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and falls under the auspices of the Center for German and European Studies (DESK), which was established at the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and the College of Arts and Sciences at the Komaba Camus in April 2005 and incorporated into the newly created Institute for Advanced Studies in April 2010. DESK, mostly comprising faculty members from Komaba, coordinate the program with the help of faculty members at the Hongo Campus. On the German side, members of the Faculty of Philosophy I (Department of Japanese Studies, Department of Political Science, Department of History, and the Department of Ethics) at the University of Halle participate as teaching members for the program.

Through a variety of joint educational and research activities, the program aims to nurture young researchers in an international environment. By implementing an internationalized, collaborative educational program at the Ph.D. level to provide a high-standard of graduate level education, and by providing careful instruction in both Japan and Germany, the program makes it possible for students to write high quality Ph.D. theses in a short amount of time. Furthermore, by fostering interaction amongst researchers and students from both countries, the program aims to integrate young researchers into an international network from the early stages of their careers.


To Cross-departmental Programs top page

General Information